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17 October 2005

West of Seven
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Rock has always been marked by a great mosaic of various talents, resulting in new blends of style and sound. West of Seven is no exception, as this New York City foursome has risen out of the ashes of time-honored standards and resurrected the blue-collar work ethic. The result - a release of its audience from the monotonous day-to-day, a celebration of our own daily lives culminating in musical dynamics.

Originally formed in 2003, each of the members has endured the daily grind of 9 to 5 while trying to bring West of Seven to a full-time endeavor. Be My Cure, the band's debut CD, echoes this sentiment. Lead vocalist Mike Bonfiglio's lyrics and stylistic approach reflect longing for individual advancement, making ends meet, and introspectives into self-worth. Sean Doran's guitar tones and heart-felt leads provide the mood tracks. Juan Bastidas and Justin Benson's explosive rhythm section fuels the aggression and motivation of getting the job done.

Reminiscent at times of Incubus' rhythmic stylings and the boot-to-the-throat crunch of Godsmack, West of Seven has been casting an increasing shadow over NYC, with its brand of melody meets mash. They are a live act garnering increased attention, as their crowd grows at each show - a crowd with which this band can identify with its want to forget about the grind, and scream out in song.

Mike Bonfiglio - born in Springfield, VT, Mike was raised on his father's folk and classic rock influences. He sang for most of his life until he took up piano, saxophone, and finally guitar during his formative years. His guitar playing provided the impetus for his songwriting. After graduating from Wake Forest University, where he played in a few different musical projects, he settled in NYC. There he became involved in the local music scene, where he met up with Sean Doran.

Sean Doran - a garageband lifer, Sean has run the gambit of different rock styles. Though his influences include Zeppelin, Rush, Dave Matthews, and Tom Morello, he's been involved in blues, prog rock, and southern rock bands, which have given him a comprehensive reservoir to draw upon for songwriting. His previous band, Clearview, which featured current West of 7 bassist Juan Bastidas, enjoyed success on the Long Island music scene, receiving radio airplay, and a trip to the LI Music Festival semis, before disbanding in December 2002.

Juan Bastidas - a worldly-influenced artist, Juan toured the U.S. and Europe as a tech, most extensively with Joan Osborne. Originally a guitarist, Juan switched to bass upon noticing the high demand for the position. Juan was enlisted by Mike and Sean after initial sessions with his brother, Andy, former Clearview guitarist.

Justin Benson - joined West of Seven after the departure of Danny Sanchez. Originally from Texas, Justin is also the drummer for American Popular, who's credits include several national tours.
Michael Bonfiglio    17 October 2005 02:04